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Should airports re-evaluate growth projects in light of COVID-19?
Following several decades of growth, COVID-19 has confronted the aviation industry with an unprecedented drop in demand. As airports are forced to focus on business continuity and crisis recovery, the question arises as to whether they should re-evaluate growth projects. In the short term, whilst the industry focuses on traffic recovery, most airports will be required to pause or reconsider longer-term growth projects involving major new infrastructure. The authors find that opportunities can still exist for airports to proceed with capacity growth projects — even considering the current crisis. Their comparatively low complexity, cost and lead times make capacity interventions involving process and technology enhancements viable alternatives or precursors to physical infrastructure interventions. By referring to a redefined purpose and integrated growth definition, the authors also identify opportunities for airports to continue investing in organisational growth, revenue growth and sustainable growth. This opinion piece further explores critical growth enablers, including customer centricity, change management and collaborative value creation. As airports continue to invest in these growth projects, the industry builds the resilience to overcome this latest crisis, and to thrive in future ones. This paper discusses opportunities for airports to continue investing in capacity growth, albeit with increased focus on targeted process and technology interventions.
The full article is available to institutions that have subscribed to the journal
Bjorn Hassert is a Global Aviation Executive who has worked with leading airports and airlines worldwide in a wide variety of corporate, commercial and operational management roles. He has developed specialist expertise in strategy, airport planning and new business development.
Tom Mockett is an aviation leader, chartered architect and RICS Member with 18 years of experience. His extensive skills and experience span airport development, infrastructure design, master planning, architecture and strategy. Tom has designed and delivered several successful medium- and large-scale airport projects.
Guilian Preud’Homme is an accomplished aviation manager. He has gained significant understanding of mid- and long-term airport planning throughout his career. Experience built in both the private aviation sector and airport operating businesses have taught him how to balance airport planning best practice with its practical and timely application to deliver integrated solutions.